What was the Whig Party?
The Whig Party was formed in 1834 as the political opponents of President Andrew Jackson and Jacksonian Democrats. Henry Clay led the Whig Party during its brief existence. The term "Whig Party" actually came from England, as it was the opposition to royal tyranny. The called President Jackson "King Andrew" because of the way he exercised his presidential powers. The Whig Party was unsuccessful, and eventually disband after after many defeats in the presidential elections in the years to follow. In 1836 they were beat quite easily by favored Democrat Martin Van Buren. In the election of 1840 they were the successful party, with William Henry Harrison president and John Tyler vice president. However, Harrison only lived for the first month in office, leaving John Tyler as president for the remainder of the term. When the election of 1844 came around, Henry Clay and the Whig Party were defeated by James K. Polk and the Democrats, who favored expansion of land and slavery. Unfortunately, by the 1850s slavery was beginning to become a huge issue in America, and the Whig Party lost a great amount of popularity, causing them to eventually disband in 1854, as many of the remaining Whigs moved to the Republican party.